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AI Reality Check In Online Dating

timothy posted about 9 months ago | from the alright-cherub dept.

AI 192

mikejuk writes "Researchers have developed an online dating system that not only matches you with partners you'll find attractive, but who are also likely to find you attractive too. The researchers at the University of Iowa have addressed an underlying problem of online dating sites. There's no doubt that such sites are ever increasing in popularity, and have good algorithms taking into account the reported likes, interests and hobbies of the person looking for a partner to come up with a potential match. What's less well catered for is the trickier aspect of the reciprocal interest – you may think person x looks nice, but will they find you equally attractive? The problem here is that if you are Average Joe and try asking out Supermodels Ann, Barbara and Cheryl, you're unlikely to get a reply. Well, not a printable one, anyway. So coming up with yet another supermodel for you to sob over isn't a lot of help.Instead, the researchers add a note of reality by analyzing the replies you get, and use this to work out how attractive you are. This is a scary thought for many of us, and one we may well not want an honest answer to. The results are used to recommend people who might actually reply if you get in contact with them. Fortunately for the attractively challenged, the research is still just that – research. However, given the fact the online dating market is worth around $3 billion a year, chances are someone is going to make use of this. We have been warned."

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Skip the blog, read the paper... (4, Informative)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about 9 months ago | (#45561887)

The /. summary is straight from the blog, and really, the only interesting part of the blog post.

Here's the actual paper (PDF): http://arxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/1311/1311.2526.pdf [arxiv.org]

Right matches for Slashdotter (5, Funny)

qbast (1265706) | about 9 months ago | (#45561927)

We analysed 137463434 online profiles and found these most suitable* matches for you:
1) your right hand
2) a goat
3) bigboobs.jpg

Do you wish to send a message?

*) actually the only ones that won't laugh hysterically at mere thought of dating you

Re:Right matches for Slashdotter (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45561959)

Since you sure are speaking from your own experience, don't leave us hanging. Which one applies to you?

Re:Right matches for Slashdotter (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562153)

The final result was a threesome between the hand, the goat, and the .jpg. The Slashdotter wasn't invited, thus stayed at home posting AC trolls with his remaining hand.

Re:Right matches for Slashdotter (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562265)

the slashdotter first needs to get out of mom's basement, so that kinda rules out the goat unless mom is also into that sort of thing.

Re:Right matches for Slashdotter (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562505)

unless mom is also into that sort of thing

Who do you think supplied the .jpg?

Re:Right matches for Slashdotter (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45561961)

Fucking moron. How old are you? 14?

Re:Right matches for Slashdotter (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562531)

still angry that the goat turned you down?

Re:Right matches for Slashdotter (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45561987)

I am left-handed, you insensitive clod!

Re:Right matches for Slashdotter (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562007)

Don't let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, and you can have twice the fun!

Re:Right matches for Slashdotter (1)

macraig (621737) | about 9 months ago | (#45562749)

actually the only ones that won't laugh hysterically at mere thought of dating you

Even my mirror laughs at the prospect, my right hand gets a seizure, and the goat would rather hang out with the mangy sheep.

wait (5, Insightful)

avivgr (1556371) | about 9 months ago | (#45561951)

i wonder if the algorithm is smart enough to offset male attractiveness based on bank account balance

Re:wait (2)

BringsApples (3418089) | about 9 months ago | (#45562043)

Or girls that wouldn't care either way.

Re:wait (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562275)

i wonder if the algorithm is smart enough to offset male attractiveness based on bank account balance

Or girls that wouldn't care either way.

Extinct species...

Re:wait (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562565)

not extinct; but they've evolved camouflage to hide from jerks who blame their deeper unattractiveness on lack of money

Re:wait (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562909)

not extinct; but they've evolved camouflage to hide from jerks who blame their deeper unattractiveness on lack of money

Or more likely evolved to call it lack of ambition instead of calling it lack of money.

Then again I have money, and like liberal leaning partners, so I am glad they have found a way to still just care about money without hurting their progressive sensibilities.

Re:wait (2)

ArsonSmith (13997) | about 9 months ago | (#45562629)

sorry you used the plural form of girl when you really must have meant "Or the girl that wouldn't care either way."

Re:wait (2)

kumanopuusan (698669) | about 9 months ago | (#45562925)

It must be nice to be so naive and/or deluded.

Re:wait (4, Informative)

michaelmalak (91262) | about 9 months ago | (#45562083)

i wonder if the algorithm is smart enough to offset male attractiveness based on bank account balance

The paper's approach is based not on AI computer vision of attractiveness, nor even "hot or not" scoring by some audience, but rather upon who receives "initial contacts" and from whom. These initial contacts comprise the edges of a bipartite graph.

So if a man's profile photo includes his Porsche or Rolex, or he mentions in his text copy how much "he loves living in [swanky neighborhood]", then, yes, this approach would reflect attraction towards wealth.

Re:wait (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562307)

So if a man's profile photo includes his Porsche or Rolex, or he mentions in his text copy how much "he loves living in [swanky neighborhood]", then, yes, this approach would reflect attraction towards wealth.

Assuming you can detect Porsches and Rolexes algorithmically in a photograph (non trivial).

Nope (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562451)

The algorithm doesn't try to analyze the profiles based on their content. All that is required is that the women reading the profile are able to detect the picture of a Porsche and that they find it more attractive than not on average, leading to an increase in pressing the "yes, I want to have more contact with this man" button.

Re:wait (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562243)

This is the real question. My buddy is an average looking guy who uses dating sites. He got a few dates but nothing happened. I told him to accentuate his large bank account. After that he found a nice girl looking for a sugar daddy. He gets regular sex, and she gets to go shopping. Laugh all you want, but they are both happy. I don't know the formula for a long lasting marriage or relationship, but money certainly helps.

People respond to incentives. Sometimes looking for love is not an incentive to certain people.

Why Bother? (2)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about 9 months ago | (#45562305)

I told him to accentuate his large bank account. After that he found a nice girl looking for a sugar daddy. He gets regular sex, and she gets to go shopping. Laugh all you want, but they are both happy.

Why bother with a "dating" site if all you want is a hot chick for a steamy fuck? Just go to Backpage.com or Craig's List, or the back pages of whatever "alturnative" weekly your city has, and schedule a "date" or a "massage" ...

Re:wait (2)

StripedCow (776465) | about 9 months ago | (#45562257)

Sigh. Here is where most get it all wrong. It is not about *who* you are, or what you *have*, it is all about what you can *pretend* to be or have.
Acting is the game.

It holds not just for men, but for women as well.

If you can't act, well then you know what to do...

Re:wait (1)

kheldan (1460303) | about 9 months ago | (#45562285)

Never mind that, I wonder if the algorithm is smart enough to discount the "preferences" of porn site operators and prostitutes that inhabit online dating sites looking for new business amongst the desperate and the undesirables that also inhabit online dating sites?

No, I'm not being funny.

Re:wait (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562885)

That's what I was wondering. Having attempted to use dating sites many times, almost every single contact made by the other party is a bot, and more than half of the replies to making contact myself turn out to be bots. However majority of them aren't porn site operators or prostitutes, no instead they are just ad-bots for shady websites that look like nothing more than a CC trap.

Re:wait (1)

The Raven (30575) | about 9 months ago | (#45562311)

Considering it analyzes the responses you get, then yes... if you are advertising your bank balance in your profile (likely by proxy, with your profile picture including a demonstration of wealth) then the responses you get will reflect that, and the algorithm will take that input.

Surprised people still use... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45561963)

I'm honestly surprised people still use online dating sites. At least the traditional ones. I remember when I gave that idea a go and found I generally sent out tons of emails but rarely got any responses.

At that point I decided I was either A) attempting to contact women that just weren't interested or b) Maybe there profiles were fakes put up by the website to get men to sign up with delusions they might meet someone.

While I have met people online, I've definitely found my chances are significantly higher in person, face to face.

If I were to be single again, I'd go for online dating as a complete last ditch effort, and that's mostly because of B) How do we even know these profiles are real?

Re:Surprised people still use... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562013)

I think they might have rejected you because you are illiterate.

Please review the difference between:

There
Their
They're

Thanks - The guy who's fucking your high secret crush behind the main-frame

Re:Surprised people still use... (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 9 months ago | (#45562447)

Please review the difference between:

There
Their
They're

OK, here's my analysis:

They all follow the pattern The.*re?. Indeed, already the first wildcard pattern match is sufficient to distinguish between all three strings. Indeed, it can be observed that in all three cases the total number of characters is odd, so it's easy to derive which ones have the final optional e, and which one doesn't. Moreover, even the length of the first wildcard pattern is sufficient to deternine the string ("There": 0, "Their": 1, "They're": 2). The wildcard sequence can also be more closely specified by observing that the first character, when present, is always a letter, and the second one, when present, is always the apostrophe. Moreover, the letter, when present, is always an i or an y. Also, it is an y exactly if it is followed by an apostrophe. Those rules, which are fulfilled for all three words (and therefore describe their commonalities and not their differences), allow to derive the whole word just from the length of the first wildcard sequence. That wildcard sequence consists of the sequence of letters after the first "e", and up to, but not including the following "r".

Summary: The only significant difference is the length of the character sequence starting right after the first "e" and the following "r".

SCNR

Re:Surprised people still use... (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 9 months ago | (#45562457)

Oops! The summary line should of course have read:

Summary: The only significant difference is the length of the character sequence starting right after the first "e" and ending right before the following "r".

Re:Surprised people still use... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562621)

You must also consider the element of context generating distinctions between these strings. For example, if the strings are present in a context containing a Grammar Nazi, then particular strings may fulfill a distinct semantic task of indicating said Nazi to be an asshole.

Re:Surprised people still use... (1)

Z00L00K (682162) | about 9 months ago | (#45562063)

I agree - anyone ever getting any real replies on those sites?

Re:Surprised people still use... (1)

Nephandus (2953269) | about 9 months ago | (#45562167)

Yes, but mostly abusive. Of course, most messages I've gotten in that same decade were abusive too. Almost all the rest turned out to be just as mental. I'm male, BTW...

Re:Surprised people still use... (2)

Shakrai (717556) | about 9 months ago | (#45562241)

I spent almost a year of my life on OkCupid, managed to get a decent number of dates for my effort, but I doubt I will never try it again. Online dating poses two particular challenges over meat-space dating:

  1. The people who are inclined to engage in online dating seem to be shier than average. Combine this is the fact that there are a lot of "colorful" characters on online dating, and they are hesitant to meet in person even if there seems to be a connection. Consequently, you end up talking forever before you finally meet them. The problem with this is twofold, one you find out too much about them, and lose out on a lot of the mystery that keeps the first few meatspace dates interesting. You also build a relationship of sorts, it's impossible not to with several weeks of writing letters and engaging in chats. Now when you meet them and it doesn't click you've got a much harsher let-down than you otherwise would for a first or second date.
  2. There seems to be an above average percentage of people who misrepresent themselves. This is hardly unique to online dating, but it's easier to filter a lot of it out when you can meet in person, look someone in their eyes, watch their vocal inflictions, etc.

I think I landed eight or nine dates on OKC in the time I was there. Probably half of them were normal, just didn't click, the rest had issues ranging from "completely misrepresented herself" to "was lining up dozens of guys for dates" to "thought we were married after two dates". I tried it for all the usual reasons, not really into the bar scene, don't have a whole lot of free time, and so on. If I were to try it again I would insist on a meat-space dates after a few good conversations. I do understand the safety issue, particularly from the female perspective, but someone who isn't willing to meet in a busy public place for lunch is likely too shy/introverted for me, or is trying to play games.

Incidentally, the last woman I went out with I met while on a run. She's out walking her dog, I'm doing road work, we wind up talking and the rest is history. Thinking back on it, I had my most successful relationships with those that I met in situations where neither of us was looking for dates. It's just easier to be yourself in that kind of situation, I think, and you're more likely to sustain a relationship with someone if you were yourself from the beginning.

Re:Surprised people still use... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562519)

The biggest problem I've found with dating sites: people don't know what they want, and when describing the person they'd like to meet, they're basically describing themselves. For example, it's very common for people to require their date to have a similar taste in music. Where's the fun in that?

Re:Surprised people still use... (0)

Nephandus (2953269) | about 9 months ago | (#45562907)

Who dates to search for new music? Spoiled semi-attractive chicks? Otherwise, what fun? It's dating. How many males date for any form of recreation? As in the dating process itself, ignoring "dating" as code for fucking.

Re:Surprised people still use... (3, Informative)

The Snowman (116231) | about 9 months ago | (#45562579)

I agree - anyone ever getting any real replies on those sites?

I did - from my (now) wife.

Re:Surprised people still use... (4, Interesting)

Deep Esophagus (686515) | about 9 months ago | (#45562079)

I'm amused by your use of the word "traditional" to describe online dating services. From my point of view, that's still newfangled. Get off my lawn!

My wife and I were actually one of the first online romances. Back in the days of 300bps dialup, there was a service in Houston that had a bunch of phone lines running into multiple modems on a single computer, so a smallish group (probably 16; I don't remember) of people could chat together. One of the oldies radio stations advertised it, so I plugged the phone number into my Hayes terminal program and met a few people including a lady type person (yes, a GIRL who owned a computer... even though it was just a TRS-80). Within three days of chatting we had started to discuss how many children we would like in our hypothetical family, and we had already started seriously considering marriage before we ever met in person. We married five weeks after we met online.

That's what is missing from these algorithms. What about those who are attracted by some other factor than physical appearance? What attracted me and Mrs. Esophagus was our shared values and interests. Which is good, since I was rail-thin, covered in zits, and, like any good computer geek, only heard of personal hygiene as a long-forgotten myth from distant lands.

As for "how do we even know these profiles are real?" -- limit yourself to people you can meet in person, which may mean restricting your search to people within your own city or less than {x} miles away. Don't commit time, money, or yourself until you have both had a chance to do a little snooping by way of facebook pages, google searches, whatever. Hint: If the facebook page appeared only after you make contact, you are right to be suspicious.

Re:Surprised people still use... (2)

Shakrai (717556) | about 9 months ago | (#45562345)

What attracted me and Mrs. Esophagus was our shared values and interests.

I don't think we need to know about your oral sex life. ;)

Re:Surprised people still use... (2)

mrbester (200927) | about 9 months ago | (#45562493)

At least he has one...

Re:Surprised people still use... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562127)

I'm honestly surprised people still use online dating sites. At least the traditional ones. I remember when I gave that idea a go and found I generally sent out tons of emails but rarely got any responses.

...

And that's what this whole story is about.

Lemme guess - your momma had to tie a pork chop around your neck to get the dog to play with you? If you went too close to a body of water someone would try to pull a hook out of your mouth?

Re:Surprised people still use... (1)

angel'o'sphere (80593) | about 9 months ago | (#45562141)

Most females on dating sites get spammed ... and if your mail is either dumb or boring she certainly has you on a low level of priority.

Re:Surprised people still use... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562199)

a.k.a. the dating equivalent of "I am a team player with excellent communication skills."

Re:Surprised people still use... (2)

Shakrai (717556) | about 9 months ago | (#45562313)

Most females on dating sites get spammed

One of my female friends was on OkCupid (she put me onto it, actually) and showed me her inbox once upon a time. *shudder* She averaged 20-25 messages per day, this in a small city (Ithaca, New York), not a major metropolitan area. Over half of them were cheesey one-liners that were dismissed out of hand, most of the rest were outright disgusting, and a small handful were good enough to get a reply from her. Of course, of those, she ruled out the people that she didn't see a physical connection with, which sounds harsh, but that's another of the pitfalls of online dating (there's more to attractiveness than even the best photograph can ever convey)

Bottom line, out of ~150 messages per week she might have found three or four that got a reply.

Re:Surprised people still use... (1)

WCLPeter (202497) | about 9 months ago | (#45562697)

she ruled out the people that she didn't see a physical connection with, which sounds harsh

What's harsh about it? It actually makes sense.

Selecting for attraction is just as valid as selecting for ideals and interests. If you're going to potentially spend the next 40 plus years with someone its usually best to pick someone you're attracted to physically - even if it feels harsh the person being rejected, better to be with someone who desires you in every way and doesn't shudder at the thought of having to see you naked.

Hi, my name is Werner Brandes. My voice is my pass (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about 9 months ago | (#45562143)

Hi, my name is Werner Brandes. My voice is my passport. Verify Me

Re:Hi, my name is Werner Brandes. My voice is my p (2)

Shakrai (717556) | about 9 months ago | (#45562327)

Dude! That's not the right Werner Brandes quote to use in a discussion about online dating.

"Shall I phone you, or nudge you?" <--- That's the one you want to reference. ;)

Re:Surprised people still use... (4, Insightful)

Bender0x7D1 (536254) | about 9 months ago | (#45562385)

I've used online dating sites, and found them quite effective. My girlfriend of over 2 years and I met on an online site. A close friend of mine met his wife on an online site. So, they do actually work.

I remember when I gave that idea a go and found I generally sent out tons of emails but rarely got any responses.

This probably means your emails sucked. Did you send a one-sentence email? Something like: "I saw your profile and you seemed interesting so I thought I would say hi." Where was your effort? If you want to meet someone, you need to demonstrate you are interested. Did you point out your similarities, common interests or things you both enjoy? You need to show that you aren't just some random guy spamming a hundred girls to see what will work. Does she have a cat or a dog? Even if you don't have one, you can mention that you used to, or you've wanted one, or ask how much the darn thing sheds. Just something showing it's personalized and, most importantly that you read her profile.

While I have met people online, I've definitely found my chances are significantly higher in person, face to face.

Again, that's probably because your emails sucked. There is no tone of voice, no body language or dimension to an email, so you have to do it all with words. This isn't easy, and a lot of people suck at it because they've never had any practice. However, most people (although not all) have a lot of practice interacting with people in real life - even if it is just to order something from Starbucks - making them better at communicating in real life than in an email.

If I were to become single again, I would be back online right away. It's a fast way to find people who are interested in similar things, and to meet a lot of people that you wouldn't in your regular routine. (When was the last time you went to a coffee shop on the other side of town just to see if you could meet someone new?)

Re:Surprised people still use... (1)

Nephandus (2953269) | about 9 months ago | (#45562887)

If you're male, not rich/hot, and not spamming hundreds(assuming you can find that many to even bother with), it's probably not going to work for ANY purposes. Most aren't going to respond, regardless of what you sent. Of the tiny percent that do, most are just trying to pull temporary entertainment and will randomly quit conversing, whether after 5 minutes or 2 months, without even a bye. That's not even including the majority of the remaining that're leading you on in other ways you're probably quasi-officially not even allowed to question.

Been forced to Slashdot Beta ? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45561979)

Is anyone else suffering a forced redirection to this seriously crappy Slashdot Beta when visiting the main Slashdot website ?

The previous format was _way_ better (and that's saying something. :-()

Slashdot is supposed to be a discussion area, not a bloody series of forum style posts. :-(

(Oh, and it looks like you need Javascript enabled, because Preview Comment didn't do anything with NoScript in operation).

Re:Been forced to Slashdot Beta ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562011)

When Dice deploys that monstrosity, it will be the death of Slashdot. There is no question about it.

Re:Been forced to Slashdot Beta ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562299)

Original AC here - the redirection to Slashdot Beta has now stopped for me.

I hope that's the last time I see that monstrosity (as the other reply so accurately called it).

Re:Been forced to Slashdot Beta ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562591)

Glad to hear they stopped it, but I think the handwriting is on the wall.

I tried the beta for about ten minutes - hated it. Too much whitespace, and seemingly too few words per square inch (I initially typed "too little content per square inch", but realized that wasn't true as both versions have vanishingly close to zero content per square kilometer). It's much harder to read/skim.

If forced to it, likely my usage will decline - perhaps to zero.

There are already similar sites (2)

angel'o'sphere (80593) | about 9 months ago | (#45562017)

Not that similar ... but http://okcupid.com/ [okcupid.com] already does a good job in matching people.
Also: this supermodell example is utter bullshit. Enough men just like an ordinary woman and enough women just want an ordinary man. How helpfull is a supermodell that is womitting twice a day and only wants sex once a week or a month?
There is much more to matching than just simple attractiveness.

Re:There are already similar sites (1)

michaelmalak (91262) | about 9 months ago | (#45562109)

Also: this supermodell example is utter bullshit. Enough men just like an ordinary woman and enough women just want an ordinary man.

The problem is that photos, generally, look less attractive than people do in real life, in part because the photo becomes such a focal point in contrast to real life where there is a whole person.

Re:There are already similar sites (1)

umafuckit (2980809) | about 9 months ago | (#45562489)

The problem is that photos, generally, look less attractive than people do in real life, in part because the photo becomes such a focal point in contrast to real life where there is a whole person.

Plus a lot of it depends on how pleasant the person is. A physically attractive person who's a total arse quite quickly appears less attractive. It works the other way around, too.

Supermodels (2)

k2r (255754) | about 9 months ago | (#45562029)

> if you are Average Joe and try asking out Supermodels Ann, Barbara and Cheryl, you're unlikely to get a reply.

This sounds funny.
From my experience many people I consider being quite above average visual attractiveness are attracted to decent Average Joes/Janes - if they are interesting, do stuff, learn interesting things, are caring, etc pp...
Even musicians, actors/actresses and models.

However, (Miss|Mister)-US-Of-Dumbnut may be only attracted to each other, but that's natures way keeping the carnage to the gene-pool low.

Re:Supermodels (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562115)

Those "supermodels" are almost certainly planted there by the site owners to draw subscribers. They are not actually available women.

Let's face it, these sites exist because those of us who aren't supermodels need a place where we can believe we have a shot at getting a date. If you're already attractive, you probably don't need any help from a dating site.

SO in short, make yourself attractive. Here are some pointers for the guys:

1. Hygiene - brush your teeth, shover, shave, trim your nose/ear hair.
2. Looks - learn how to dress nicely, get a decent haircut, get plastic surgery if you have severe deficits
3. Health - stop eating junk food all the time, hit the gym, see a doctor or dentist regularly
3. Stability - try to keep a job, save some money out of every check, don't blow your money on toys
4. Demeanor - learn to be polite and respectful, develop some talent, be interested in other people, and learn when to KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT!

Re:Supermodels (1)

Nephandus (2953269) | about 9 months ago | (#45562219)

Attraction is insufficient. You need compatibility and accessibility. That's where dating sites are useful. Normalization's pretty fucking useless, unless you actually want to be a good little dildo to yet another femidrone.

Re:Supermodels (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562357)

That's true. There are a lot of women I have found attractive, some of whom were attracted to me, but we just had no chemistry. No dating site will ever quantify chemistry.

Still, you may not get the chance to find out if she's immediately repulsed by your flabby, hairy, smelly bod or your crappy car, crappy job, and crappy clothes.

Re:Supermodels (1)

k2r (255754) | about 9 months ago | (#45562763)

Maybe this:

"You have most likely all the resources to be an attractive person for a group of people large enough to find some corresponding most significant other(s)."

I consider it highly unlikely that you need plastic surgery to do so. Your nose is not what keeps you a from finding a partner, online or offline.

( >40yo GWM in an relationship of > 10 years here. Not because we are supermodels but because we're trying to stay "attractive" out of respect for the other. )

Welcome! (1)

nospam007 (722110) | about 9 months ago | (#45562039)

You claim, you are a 7, (eightish)

After the de-photoshopper ran its course, our algorithm has determined that in reality you are a 3 (twoish)

If you are certain that this is not correct, please upload a different photo.

Never will happen (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562041)

Dating sites want better match for better satisfaction, but they never want to find optimal matches. Sub-optimal matches ensure a returning customer.

Aww, real life isn't about "boosting self esteem"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562097)

Can't keep score in kid's soccer games. Can't give stupid kids bad grades. Have to give every single kid a trophy - which means it's worthless.

And now when someone comes up with a way to figure out who's ugly enough to make a train take a dirt road it's a Slashdot story.

Lordy, too many coddled pussies need to be slapped in the face with the dead rotten fish of reality.

bigger problems (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562101)

This looks like an improvement over the previous bullshit, but it still doesn't really address the bigger problems.

Dating sites are for people who don't already have a date, and are actively looking for one. Those people are overwhelmingly male.
If you're a male, looking for a date, this sort of sausage-fest is the last place you'd want to look.
Most of the few females either have serious problems, or are posting in bad faith, and aren't really looking for a date.

sounds logical, but I got LOTS of dates, awesome (1)

raymorris (2726007) | about 9 months ago | (#45562259)

Your reasoning sounds logical. When I actually tried it, I had conversations with many women, went on dates with over a dozen, including one who looked liked a supermodel, and eventually found my AWESOME wife on mate1.com.

I'm a scrawny nerd who isn't handsome, but I did some things right, like posting action photos. There was me in my jetski, me on horseback, etc. I guess women seeing those photos consciously or subconsciously saw that dating me would mean doing fun stuff like jetsking and horseback riding, etc. Also I suppose those pics suggest I may be financially stable. Women like stability, security.

"how attractive" is wrong, Chris Brown Pavarotti (2)

raymorris (2726007) | about 9 months ago | (#45562119)

The summary talks about "how attractive you are" and "supermodels". I hope the study doesn't look at it that way, because that's incorrect. The correct question is "to whom are you attractive?"

Chris Brown dated a superstar. Is he attractive? I'm a total nerd, and not particularly good looking. My wife married me and finds Chris Brown revolting. So who is more attractive, Chris Brown or me? Neither, we attract different women. On the other hand, my wife thinks Pavarotti is extremely romantic. Is Pavarotti more attractive than Lil Wayne? Each is more attractive to some some women.

If I were single, I'd date Alyssa Milano for sure. Miley Cyrus, I take pity on. I wouldn't sleep with her, I'd suggest she put her clothes back on.* So which is more attractive? A good system would match pairs likely to find each other attractive, not assign a single attractiveness score.

* okay so maybe I'd pity her AND sleep with her before I suggested she put some clothes on.

Re:"how attractive" is wrong, Chris Brown Pavarott (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562517)

who is Chris Brown

Re:"how attractive" is wrong, Chris Brown Pavarott (2)

FredGauss (3087275) | about 9 months ago | (#45562549)

As you suggest "how attractive" is more nuanced than a 0-10 score on a linear scale. As I see it, this is no different than other recommendation systems. e.g. Netflix knows what you watch, knows what other people watch, and can make recommendations based on commonality in patterns. But each person is unique, and recommendations can take on this nature as well. Some users of the site may be relatively insensitive to physical appearance, while others might respond preferably to individuals with certain characteristics that can be quantified by a statistical model (whether this slice looks like Chris Brown, Pavarotti, or both). I'd also expect that this type of analysis will become increasingly common in dating sites, but elsewhere too. Anywhere that there are quantifiable measures that can be attached to people, and commonality established between people, there is the potential for "intelligent" recommendations to be made. Whether this works well in practice is another story, but time will tell. It's also the case that the devil is very much in the details for this type of work, so it's not as though this study means that this "problem" is solved.

Re:"how attractive" is wrong, Chris Brown Pavarott (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562567)

Is Pavarotti more attractive than Lil Wayne?

Yes. Have you seen Lil Wayne? Have you heard his 'music'?

yet, all the hot models date Lil Wayne (1)

raymorris (2726007) | about 9 months ago | (#45562647)

True, and look at all the gorgeous models who date Lil Wayne:

http://m.whosdatedwho.com/p3413/lil-wayne/ [whosdatedwho.com]

Taste is hard to quantify, I suppose.

Re:yet, all the hot models date Lil Wayne (1)

Jody Bruchon (3404363) | about 9 months ago | (#45562759)

OW! My eyes! WHERE is the UN-SEE BUTTON?!

Wrong Objective (4, Interesting)

Bill Dimm (463823) | about 9 months ago | (#45562131)

The problem here is that if you are Average Joe and try asking out Supermodels Ann, Barbara and Cheryl, you're unlikely to get a reply. Well, not a printable one, anyway. So coming up with yet another supermodel for you to sob over isn't a lot of help.

This assumes that the goal of the dating site is to find you a mate. It isn't. The goal is to get you to pay as much as possible in subscription fees, or view as many ads as possible so they can make money. If you find a mate, you quite subscribing and quit visiting the site, so that's no good. What keeps you on the site is the illusion that you've got at chance at that supermodel. The optimal situation for the dating site is to give you hope without success.

Go to a site like Match.com. Want to look around to see if there is anyone you would want to date? No problem, just create an account -- it's free! Of course, when other people see your account they will have no idea that you haven't paid the subscription fee and won't be able to read any of the emails they send to you unless you pay. So Match.com has new profiles popping up to give their subscribers hope, but the emails those subscribers are wasting their time sending aren't even seen. Perfectly OK to waste your time as long as it keeps you paying.

Re:Wrong Objective (1)

Nephandus (2953269) | about 9 months ago | (#45562339)

Anyone remember that old pre-Match.com-bought OkCupid analysis using Match.com's own #s showing they had a lower marriage rate than the general population? The one that vanished after the buyout... Now, we got a "promote me" button that charges you for visibility, and they hide users from your searches in tiers of some kind, even 99% matches.

Re:Wrong Objective (1)

Bill Dimm (463823) | about 9 months ago | (#45562857)

Anyone remember that old pre-Match.com-bought OkCupid analysis using Match.com's own #s showing they had a lower marriage rate than the general population?

I think you mean this [archive.org] (courtesy of user "mib" a little farther down [slashdot.org] ).

Re:Wrong Objective (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562419)

I know for a *fact* that [a very popular site] pays people to create profiles (up to $1 per profile). So if you ever wonder why you don't get a reply, it's because their mailbox is not being monitored at all by anyone.

pro-tips for dating retards (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562145)

1. "Alpha males" are more likely to get women. That doesn't mean they're more likely to enjoy a decent relationship, however. So don't worry about competing - just be yourself, and wait for someone decent to come along;

2. In particular, don't be a "nice guy" to people you want to fuck. Everyone can see through this. There is nothing "nice" about being "nice" to someone just to increase your chances of fucking them. Just be yourself, and wait for someone decent to come along;

3. These sites are all primitive pigeon-holing nonsense: they are designed for people only looking for one or two things, and they match based on weighted points systems - but interesting relationships come out of various physical, intellecual and emotional connections formed over time, not superficial measures. You won't find a computer algorithm which can achieve this for you. Just get to know lots of people, and wait for a good friendship to develop, perhaps into a relationship. In particular, DON'T go by first impressions;

4. Did I mention to just be yourself? A dick will only get a dick.

Re:pro-tips for dating retards (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562545)

>A dick will only get a dick
score!

Re:pro-tips for dating retards (1)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | about 9 months ago | (#45562631)

4. Did I mention to just be yourself? A dick will only get a dick.

I think the site for that is called "Grinder", or were you talking about something else? :-)

Solution to a solved problem (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562201)

This is a solution to a solved problem(as much as it can be solved with today's tech). Having worked at a dating site, I will tell you that we used an approach eerily similar to what these researchers are doing. We also had other methods in place to select for mutual attraction. The real problem with this method, and the one we used, was that you may have different opinions on people depending on the circumstances where you meet. Maybe meeting a guy who loves football would be somewhat endearing when you meet him at a game of a team you both like, meeting him online while his team is on a skid? Not so much perhaps. It's your environment, mood, surrounding circumstances, and many more things as much as it is your profile picture and elevator speech.

Online Dating is a Waste (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562213)

Most dating sites have a reply rate of less than 5%. The men message women they would never approach in real life. The women create accounts with no intention of replying or dating; they only want some form of attention. Even if you're good looking, muscles, rich, and have the best personality they will not reply to you. I've spent about 9 years on dating sites and never got anywhere. I only sign up for them just to look at local women's faces. Sad I know.

Re:Online Dating is a Waste (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562359)

That's weird. Maybe it's a difference of approach. I was surprised by how good a time I had going on dates with women that I had met online. I used only two completely free dating sites, so my only expenses were my own drinks (never paid for women, equality all the way). In exchange I got to have some genuinely interesting conversations with real people. I am officially introverted, so social interactions can leave me drained, but dates were always exciting, and a bit of practice allowed me to "warm up" more quickly. A couple of those dates turned into girlfriends, and though these didn't ultimately last (I met my present partner offline), I feel enriched by it all. Maybe I even have a couple of lifetime friends out of it, whom I would have never met had we not started with dating. In fact, I occasionally bemoan there not being a "dating" site for hetero met who are looking to expand their friend circle. As my guy friends would move out of town and drop off the radar, I was finding myself with an ever higher proportion of women as friends, since I was meeting new women online, and a significant proportion of them were pretty cool. I wasn't meeting new guys to be friends with. Anyway, for me online dating has been an unalloyed positive experience in my life, and because of the smart, interesting women I've met, it's made me a smarter and more interesting person.

Re:Online Dating is a Waste (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562587)

I may be misremembering, or things may have changed, but OKcupid had an option to search for people just for friends. It may or may not bring the best results, but it's worth a try.

Girls are assholes (1)

pitchpipe (708843) | about 9 months ago | (#45562233)

The problem here is that if you are Average Joe and try asking out Supermodels Ann, Barbara and Cheryl, you're unlikely to get a reply.

The problem here is that a lot of girls think they're supermodels, when in reality they're just average Jane themselves. Then they label a guy 'creepy' just because he's not very attractive and girls are assholes [youtube.com] .

Re:Girls are assholes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562901)

Next step in online dating: smelly-vision, for that unconscious test of immune system and too close kinship. Smell before you taste it, the slogan for successful online bonding experience in terms of probability of having children together.

Obligatory (5, Interesting)

mib (132909) | about 9 months ago | (#45562319)

Read, be enlightened. Why you should never pay for online dating, a blog entry from the founder of OKCupid (via the wayback machine since it was pulled when they got bought out by for-pay dating site match.com):

http://web.archive.org/web/20101006104124/http://blog.okcupid.com/index.php/why-you-should-never-pay-for-online-dating/ [archive.org]

Re:Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562605)

They were bought out? Well that's shit. I was actually considering going back, since it was nice and I met some genuinely cool people. But match.com is shit. How badly have they mangled it?

Re:Obligatory (1)

Jody Bruchon (3404363) | about 9 months ago | (#45562849)

Train, meet train. How's that?

Lying (1)

Princeofcups (150855) | about 9 months ago | (#45562369)

Since most people's profiles are lies, intentional or not, on-line dating will always be pure luck, hit or miss.

it's not that easy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562405)

Dating obviously is not solely based on attractiveness. I'm pretty sure almost everyone has witnessed a beautiful woman with everything to offer, dating or married to a guy with seemingly no redeemable qualities.

Separately, as a single guy, I was rated by the community as being in the top 5 or 10% of the site's most attractive users, and even that did not help me get more replies. (I'd say roughly 3 out of 20 responded seemingly regardless of what I wrote)

Conversely I rated over 2,000 profiles and I gave about 112 yeses to 1,888 nos. Maybe I should contact all of them and hope for a few decent matches?

(Yes I really did rate over 2,000 profiles. I think it only took about two nights after work. Ended up meeting a girl with nearly everything in common except for one major major issue that killed it for us.)

People may say I'm too picky but given maybe a billion girls in my demographic, there's bound to be at least ten who are a great matches. I refuse to settle just for the sake of having a relationship.

Side note: my captcha is "frisky"

The truth about online dating (3, Interesting)

kheldan (1460303) | about 9 months ago | (#45562453)

"The truth" according to my past experience and observations at least, so take it with a salt lick-sized grain of salt, YMMV, etc.

Online dating seems to contain the following people:
  • Attention whores
  • Porn site operators looking to increase their business
  • Porn chicks
  • Prostitutes looking to increase their business
  • Predators
  • Earnest but desperate undesirables
  • People with social anxiety disorders of one degree or another
  • Seemingly average people, but with "issues" (ranging from mild to severe, and ranging from few to many)
  • Actual average people

So far as I can tell "Actual average people" occupy only a small percentage of the total of this list.

I've even tried paywall-protected online dating, with similar observations to the above. You might say that I just had a bad experience, but in the past I tried this time and again, with the same results. My conclusion? Online dating is a waste of time and money at best, and a total scam at worst. Not worth your time, money, and emotional energy. Meet people the "old fashioned" way: in person, local to you, in social settings, or at your church (if you're so inclined), or in college, or in the workplace.

____________________________________________________________

A note to the "moderation trolls", doubtlessly with their fingers, as always, hovering over the keyboard, ready to mod this down: See the disclaimer at the beginning of this comment. Disagreeing with or disliking my opinions of this subject does not constitute me being a "Troll" or "Flamebait" or anything else derogatory in nature; it merely means you don't like it, so get over it and move on.

Re:The truth about online dating (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562589)

Which category do you fall into? I'm certainly the social anxiety type that created a profile but was too timid to message people.

(wow, the CAPTCHA is fucking difficult)

Looks can be deceiving... (1)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | about 9 months ago | (#45562573)

The problem here is that if you are Average Joe and try asking out Supermodels Ann, Barbara and Cheryl, you're unlikely to get a reply.

And don't judge a book by its cover. Supermodel appearance - ignoring fashion and grooming - tells almost no story, except that someone won some part of the genetic lottery. Sure attraction matters, but perhaps many people focus on the wrong things - or too specific things - and many of *those* things matter very little and/or may not last over the long term, which is a shame because all the *other* things can make for a very good relationship.

I was very lucky when I met Sue - way back in 1985 - when I was 22. She was 41 and, quite frankly, out of my league in many ways. (I'm reminded of this quote from The Librarian: Quest for the Spear [wikipedia.org] :)

Nicole Noone: Hey, let's stop for a moment, and consider. I'm way out of your league. Way out. If your league were to explode, I wouldn't hear the sound for another three days. So for everybody's sake, let's just enjoy a companionable silence.

Okay, perhaps we weren't *that* far apart, anyway... She was very attractive (see photo at bottom of: http://remembersue.tumblr.com/ [tumblr.com] ), and also smart, funny and educated with a BA/MA in English and many hours over that. For whatever reason, I was ultimately what she wanted/needed and we were very happily together for 20 years until she died in January 2006. Sue will be a tough act to follow, if/when I ever start dating again. (and I don't know if I have the right to be so lucky twice, when many aren't that lucky once)

Just my $0.02.

The "matches" are always all wrong for me anyway. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562659)

I blatantly put that I am an overweight female couch potatoe, who does not want kids, and interested in male with similar interests.. There is never anywhere to say my religeon is Wicca, and that my biggest imterests are science ficton and technology.

The responses are always from men claiming to be highly athletic, catholic, men who like chic flicks and want lots of kids, and they said they were looking for catholic women who want lots of kids. Why would I care if they find me attractive if they don't match what I want?

Ship might have already sailed (1)

macraig (621737) | about 9 months ago | (#45562721)

Just because these guys put out a press release proclaiming their brilliant innovation doesn't mean that OKCupid isn't already quietly doing this.

simple girls love alphas and hate betas and omegas (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45562747)

unless tehy r lesbo its in there biology to always choose teh alpha male dew to inate hypergamy. being beta aint bad, just u wont get ne girls. betas and omegas, or sum call nice guys r teh whiners w/ week genes so tehy aint got nuthin to offer a girl for breeding. alphas, or "jerks" and "douchebags" as teh week gened nice guys call us, r teh winners w/ the strong genes sutible for passing onto teh next generation and teh girly nice guys cant handle that. oh girls change once tehy reach 30 or 40 and their used up. tehy change there tune by saying tehy want a nice guy to settle down with and even secretly want a male w/ exp so tehy can land a nice guy. well nice guys gues what, only teh jerks will have exp so u nice guys will keep losing out while those girls will still keep giving us alphas plenty of pussy. but all is not lost u nice guys can turn gay and get each other. but if u dont like that you can either be happy being perm virgins or just kill urselfs, theirs no girl out there for ya. lmfao

I need women attracted to emotionally dead men (1)

sandbagger (654585) | about 9 months ago | (#45562841)

Oh, they also need to take initiative because frankly don't read people very well. Yes, I'm in tech R&D, why do you ask?

Dating Sites Distort Reality (1)

AlphaBro (2809233) | about 9 months ago | (#45562875)

As someone who has had a great deal of success with a variety of amazing women (too much success, perhaps, but I love my kids) I must say: online dating is a fucking scam. While in a slump, a friend recommended me OKCupid. The idea of using an algorithm to match people based on interest seemed solid. In fact, going in I thought it might even be better than "real life", since I had so many issues finding women whose interests paralleled mine. Oh how wrong I was. Of all the messages I sent, maybe 1/10 at most got responses. Of those, all conversations tapered off into nothingness, and I never met a single girl in person. Eventually my effortful posts turned into one liners; after all, what's the point of writing a novella if it's going to yield nothing? After canvasing essentially every attractive female in the vicinity and getting the same results, I gave up. Perhaps I am ugly, or maybe my messages weren't wordy enough. While I found the women I messaged attractive, most of them certainly weren't super models, and that's fine. What's not fine, however, was the continued sense of rejection I experienced. It was degrading and so far off from what I experienced in real life I was absolutely dumbfounded.

If you're shy and have had little exposure to women, do not use your experiences on dating sites as a basis for the type of women you are capable of getting. I repeat, do not use your experiences on dating sites as a basis for the type of women you are capable of getting. You, as a human being, are much more than can ever possibly represented by some shitty pictures and bullshit text. It's tough, but get off the computer, and work out if you don't already. Do it for yourself, because it will make you feel better. Break out of your shell. That doesn't necessarily mean becoming a bar star, but get out, even if that just means going to a friends house and hanging out for a bit. You never know who you might meet, and when you do meet someone you're interested in, don't be be shy. Pull the fucking trigger. After all, what do you have to lose? What are you risking? Rejection? Who fucking cares? Life is too short to worry about that bullshit. Get out and engage the women that you are attracted to, even those who you think you don't have a chance with. Who knows? Your brazen, but cordial, advances might win her favor, leaving you pleasantly surprised and very much not alone. It's our responsibility to ensure that Idiocracy doesn't become a reality, and right now we're losing the fight.

On a related note, while I've never met a woman from a dating site, I actually met several from MySpace when it was new. They all turned out to be absolutely nuts, but fun was had. In fact, the most supermodel-esque woman I have been with (not that physical appearances are top priority) was met through MySpace. I'm not sure if such results can be replicated now that social media has caught on, but it's still interesting.
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